Children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) show atypical attention, particularly for social events. The new Multisensory Attention Assessment Protocol (MAAP) assesses fine-grained individual differences in attention disengagement, maintenance, and audiovisual matching for social and nonsocial events. We investigated the role of competing stimulation on attention, and relations with language and symptomatology in children with ASD and typical controls. Findings revealed: (1) the MAAP differentiated children with ASD from controls, (2) greater attention to social events predicted better language for both groups and lower symptom severity in children with ASD, (3) different pathways from attention to language were evident in children with ASD versus controls. The MAAP provides an ideal attention assessment for revealing diagnostic group differences and relations with outcomes.